It seems minor, but installing the power cables for a ham radio in a car is a major project if you want it done right. After months of thoughts and tactics, I made good on my plan to install a 25 Amp circuit into my car to power my portable amateur radio equipment. I’ve been needing this capability for a while. It gives me another option for operating away from home, allowing me to drive to any convenient spot and make HF contacts, as well as allowing me to make VHF contacts while on the road. I’ll have radio power for as long as I have gas in the tank.
It took me a while to get around to doing it, but once I started, it was two evenings well-spent. Here’s the details. Continue reading “Mobile Power Project: Ham Radio On the Go!”
Good news is good news:
This morning, I took my Technician Class license test for amateur radio and passed. Out of the 35 questions on the exam, I missed 1 question (I bet it was that question about transmitting in international waters). So yeah, I passed!
The examiners gave everyone in the test session the option — if they passed their intended license class exam — of taking the next license class exam up. The three classes, from lowest to highest privileges, is Technician, General, and Amateur Extra. So when I passed Technician, they gave me the option to take the General test. I’m like, “Ok, I’ll give it a shot. It’s not like double-or-nothing, right?” Everyone laughed.
Out of 35 questions, with a passing requirement of 26 correct, I missed it by 1 and got only 25 right. Goddammit, so close. So close! So the examiners gave me the option to pay another $15 testing fee for a retake of the General exam with a different printed revision, since I was so close. I threw caution to the wind and went for it. Missed it by 2. Dammit.
But, at least I still have a Technician classification. At least there’s that. So, once my call sign is published on the FCC directory, I can begin transmitting. I can finally push the Push-To-Talk button. The earliest they expect it to be published is next Thursday, so here’s hoping, yeah?
Y’know, it’s kinda like winning second place. There’s a particular psychology of winning that affects how you feel about your victory based on where you stand on the podium. First place winners are the happiest and feel the most victorious. Third place winners are happy and feel grateful for being able to stand on the podium. But second place winners? They are the least happy because they were so close to making first. So close!
My brain is now fried, but at least I’m on the podium. Time to study for the General exam.